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Discussion » Questions » Life and Society » Was Alan McEwen out of line as a journalist for doxing someone he disagrees with?

Was Alan McEwen out of line as a journalist for doxing someone he disagrees with?

This is not meant as support for the views of Millenial Woes so don't take it as that.  The question is purely about the ethical basis of doxing people because someone disagrees with them and especially by a journalist.

Is being doxing by a journalist  harassment and inciting violence in and of itself? Was Alan McEwen wrong to do it and should he face consequences and does it detract from him being an ethical and responsible journalist?

Posted - January 11


  • 8672
    What the heck is doxing?
      January 11, 2017 11:53 AM MST

  • 11343
    Gathering the personal information of someone on the internet and posting it publicly.   Names, addresses, relationships, phone numbers, etc. Removing an persons privacy.  Usually to cause a negative Real Life outcomes  to them, embarrass them, or harass them.
    It's a diminutive netspeak derived from document. This post was edited by Glis at January 11, 2017 11:58 AM MST
      January 11, 2017 11:57 AM MST

  • 8672
    Good luck doxing me.
      January 11, 2017 12:21 PM MST

  • 11343
    No intention to. This post was edited by Glis at January 11, 2017 12:28 PM MST
      January 11, 2017 12:28 PM MST

  • 2139
    I've watched Millenial Woes' videos. He is fascinating from a psychological point of view. He seems to have some personal problems and issues which clearly led to his beliefs. Apparently he stayed inside his room for several years. I don't agree with him, but like I said, he is a fascinating character study.

    I think you should be able to stay anonymous if you want to. However, you do take a risk when you expose yourself so much.
      January 11, 2017 12:32 PM MST

  • 11343
    I'm  with you on your opinion of Millenial Woes.  He makes a few decent points but it's buried in a lot of BS, self pity, and vitriol.  He is  interesting   to watch in the same way Illuminati conspiracies and  Varg Vikerns  are.
    You're spot on about the second part, but I'm kinda more interested in your view of the ethical implications of a journalist doxing someone and a media outlet printing it.  If you have one.  Is it ethical to do so?
      January 11, 2017 12:41 PM MST

  • 2139
    Yeah, I watched some of his older more personal life-story videos. I must say there are some parallel events in his life and mine. It just got me thinking how similar situations can lead to different outcomes.

    Doxing by journalists. Is it ethical? I would say no, because it could lead to too many problems. Does just publishing his name count? I guess that would lead to people being able to find out the other information.

    According to the last videos that I watched, and it's been several months because they became repetitive and boring, he lived at home with his family who didn't approve of what he was doing. So now they could be in danger. Someone will probably attack them or vandalize their house.

    Of course if someone is a criminal or terrorist I wouldn't have a problem with a journalist passing on the information to authorities. I guess I'm a hypocrite.
      January 11, 2017 12:51 PM MST

  • 11343
    everyone is a hypocrite.   Passing on information to authorities doesn't have many parallels to doxing a persons home address  to a riled public because they hold opposing views though.

    Yes, apparently he did live with his father who wasn't on board with him and his family has experienced vandals and harassment.   Supposedly anyways,  Id on't really know for sure.  Just what it is being said.
    It does seem a dangerous precedent to excuse the behavior.   Could really come back to bite everyone in the behind.  Likely will.

    His name?  IDK,  he showed his face so I would assume his name wouldn't have been hard to extrapolate by anyone willing to put in the effort even if he didn't.  I likely don't know much more about him than you as I only watched him for the same reasons you stated. Not as a fan or supporter.  Though many people are too lazy to do that, but when they are just handed it aren't too lazy to go throw a brick through a window or get their jollies off with some other kind of harassment.   Humans are dangerous and chaotic animals. This post was edited by Glis at January 11, 2017 1:04 PM MST
      January 11, 2017 1:01 PM MST

  • I take it you're referring to Colin Robertson?

    If you are, then my answer is, 'Nope.  Not at all'.  

    The world is full of people who want to play games and act hard as nails, but the minute you agree to play dirty their enthusiasm rather disappears.  :)

      January 11, 2017 12:34 PM MST

  • 11343
    So posting his families address and his info to be harassed is justifiable for a journalist and news outlet?

    IDK,  he was a jerk for his views, but I don't know if Alan was right to do so as a journalist.  Seems an abuse and against all ethics of journalistic integrity.  
      January 11, 2017 12:44 PM MST

  • Why yes, I would say it is justifiable.  If he didn't live with his parents it would not be, but as it's his home address, no problem.  Not the harassment you understand, but the information.  It's publicly available, so no laws have been broken.  The journalist wasn't given it in confidence, so no trust has been broken and therefore no ethical question exists.

    If someone wants to promulgate their views I'm more than ready to listen.  But this bloke is such a ridiculous cliche (alt-right, lives with dad, posts from his bedroom, wants to remain anonymous) it's almost pathetic.

    People should say what they wish and I will defend their right to say it, but anyone who thinks that actions and words do not (and perhaps more worryingly, should not) have consequences is a childish fool.  And I think the outlying extremes of political ideologies harbour these people, make them feel safe, secure and among 'friends'. 

    This is the same kind of petri dish in which every violent or revolting 'political' action, whatever it's origin, has been spawned.  We need each other to counter our own tendency to always think we're right.  Take that away and put people in self-chosen 'associations' and you've got problems.  The signs of this are all over western politics and society, both mainstream and otherwise.

    So I have no problem this man's rock has been lifted.  I will have a problem if he suffers any direct injury (personal or material) as a result.
      January 11, 2017 1:36 PM MST

  • 11343
    While I agree Milenial Woes was pathetic, and appreciate your opinion. I still think you are letting your passionate disdain for him cloud your logic that it's ethical for a journalist and paper to engage in such behavior.
    Just because something is legal doesn't mean it's ethical.  You don't see a problem with allowing journalist and paper play thought police like this?
    The information serves no purpose but to cause harassment and violence.  It is almost a call to do so in and of itself.  I just can't see how any ends would justify this means.

    Would you feel the same way if an Alt-right publication did the samething to say, someone like Alan McEwen or is it okay because of who it is and what view it is?
    Is finding issue with Alan's actions taken as having to be supporting Millenial Woes opinions? This post was edited by Glis at January 11, 2017 1:49 PM MST
      January 11, 2017 1:46 PM MST

  • "you are letting your passionate disdain for him cloud your logic"  Perhaps I do at that.  :)  It's not disdain for his politics though, but his troll-under-the-bridge tactics.

    To answer your question, I would have no problem with information that is already available being made available and that would apply to the journalist in question, yes.  Incitement is quite another thing.

    I should stress that I think any transgression of normal laws as a result of such information being made more widely available should be treated with the utmost severity with no exceptions.  I'm not interested in 'sides' here so much as having as sensible a conversation as possible.  That isn't really possible with society increasingly being divided up into 'island nations' who only look, speak and think like others within their group.

    There are too many people of all ages and descriptions doing the 'basement' thing and living in a fantasy of their own making.  That bubble has to be popped or we'll go nowhere as societies except downward.  I don't wish to see debate shut down but enabled but to get the protagonists to engage you first have to identify them.  Having one of them hiding behind daddy's curtains isn't the way to go.
      January 11, 2017 2:16 PM MST

  • 11343
    Fair enough I guess.  Thanks for bringing an opposing perspective. Appreciate it.
      January 11, 2017 2:29 PM MST

  • More than welcome.  :)
      January 11, 2017 2:39 PM MST